Promoting Sexual and Reproductive Health among Makerere University Students
Pathfinder reached students at Makerere University with valuable sexual and reproductive health information and services through a partnership with the Makerere University Medical Students Association (MUMSA). The project trained 75 medical student volunteers to serve as peer service providers using Pathfinder International's Module 16 Training Manual: Reproductive Health Services for Adolescents and other training materials provided by facilitators. The peer service providers helped around 6,000 students.
In addition to formal training in comprehensive adolescent sexual and reproductive health, peer service providers had on-going mentoring and supervision by faculty members from the Obstetrics and Gynecology Department at the Makerere University Medical School. The peer providers were given materials to aid in counseling of their peers, including T-shirts and bags that increased their visibility on campus and also boosted the pride and morale of the volunteers.
Provision of Services by Peer Service Providers
Pathfinder-trained peer service providers covered 10 residence halls on campus and five off-campus, offering one-on-one counseling and information about reproductive health and adolescent health problems. They also distributed short-term contraceptive methods, including condoms and pills, to fellow students. For health challenges the peer service providers were unable to manage themselves, there was a referral system established with the University Hospital at Makerere and the National Hospital in Mulago to which the peer service providers could send their peers for counseling on unwanted pregnancies, long term contraceptive methods, as well as any other health problems that arose. The project also established linkages with the National Hospital's Family Planning Unit through which short term contraception and emergency contraceptives were supplied to student providers for distribution to their peers.
Outreach to University students
To raise awareness about their services, peer service providers conducted outreach meetings at the residence halls. An outreach session typically consisted of a video on positive choices, a presentation from someone living with HIV and AIDS (or an experienced reproductive health counselor), remarks on the project by Pathfinder, and the introduction of peer service providers and the help they offer. Also, after undertaking a trip to tour and learn from a similar Pathfinder-funded project in Kenya, the providers conducted a voluntary counseling and testing campaign with an overwhelming number of students taking HIV tests and receiving counseling.
Addressing Unmet Need for Contraception among HIV-Positive Women in Northern and North Eastern Uganda
This PATH/CIDA-funded project integrates family planning into HIV and AIDS services in 11 post-conflict districts of Uganda by working with the community to build demand and supporting facilities in quality counseling, contraceptive services and referrals.
Pathfinder was awarded a grant to provide technical assistance to 11 grantees in Uganda and Tanzania. Pathfinder aims to improve the organizational capacity of these grantees to effect health and community systems strengthening.
An anonymous donor provided funding to address the unmet need for family planning in Uganda. Pathfinder, in collaboration with the Family Planning Association of Uganda (FPAU) implemented a project focused on advocacy and community-based revitalization.
Combining Health and Food Security in Mozambique: Interview With Pathfinder International’s SCIP Project
This Q&A with Pathfinder's Strengthening Communities Through Integrated Programming (SCIP) discusses our unique approach to providing reproductive health care in Mozambique's Nampula Province as well as successes and challenges associated with the project.
Lights will go out around the world on Saturday in honor of Earth Hour—a global call to action to take responsibility for our environmental impact. Bussi Island is answering that call, but it’s likely their work will take much more than an hour.